Disclaimer: all credit goes to David Harding who created the original format of this workshop.
When I first start a project, I love to run this workshop. It helps create a shared understanding of our users, informs the user interview script, and recruitment process.
You can run this workshop using post it notes, Trello, Google Sheets or Miro. For this workshop to be a success, invite someone who has a good understanding of the problem space. They will help answer the key questions under point 2.
Further information: seven facilitation tips to lead the perfect workshop.
Here’s a typical structure I follow:
1) Identify who your users are. [10 mins]
On post-it notes, list out the key users in your service.
2) Determine the key questions you want to know.
Here’s what I use:
- Who are they?
- What do they do?
- Who do they work for?
- What decisions do they make?
- How many are there?
- Where are they?
- How do they differ with other users?
- How do we find them?
This is not an exhaustive list.
3) Go through the questions for each user. [15 minutes for each user]
You want to understand people’s assumptions. I like to have a dedicated note taker to capture the discussion. If there’s a clear unknown you can add it to the board.
You should end up with something like this.
|Who are they?||What do they do?||Who do they work for?||What decisions do they make?||How many are there?||Where are they?||How do they differ?||How do we find them?||What we are confident in||What we are less confident in|
|Example: School Leader||They are accountable for getting the project done||DfE||Project levels decisions||50||Remote workers throughout England||Mix of contractors and civil servants||Policy Lead can help source them||...||...|
You will notice I have added two columns for ‘what we are confident in’ and ‘what we are less confident in’. These are useful headings to capture assumptions.
How do you like to start a user research plan? Please get in touch, if you have something that has worked for you.